Friday, September 2, 2011

A Day At The NY State Fair

The pond and fountain in front of the Horticulture Building.
It was a gorgeous day, and we really enjoyed having a whole afternoon
to suit ourselves and enjoy the Fair.  Our favorite restaurant, King David's,
had a booth there, so we had both lunch and dinner with them (gyros for
my husband, falafel for me).  We also discovered the joy of wine slushies.

The 9/11 Memorial at the Fair - it was very emotional to see all the tributes 
to the 9/11 victims and heroes all over the fairgrounds, 
but this was the main memorial.

A giant sand sculpture tribute to 9/11.
Oddly enough, it was in the center of a large number of commercial booths.
You name it, they sold it.  They had some real space-age jacuzzis, and
for some reason cooking demonstrations were all over the place.
I enjoyed the vendors selling handcrafted items.

The annual Butter Sculpture at the Dairy Building - 
my husband insisted we take a picture of it.
The sculpture rotates in its own special refrigerated display case.
We also enjoyed ice cold fresh milk there - $.25/glass, and a real treat.
I think our favorite goody at the fair was the maple soft serve ice cream.
We saw some interesting fair foods, too - like the Pig and Potato Parfait
(a huge clear cup layered with pulled pork, BBQ sauce, and mashed potatoes),
and Alligator On A Stick or Shark On A Stick.
I brought home a caramel-nut apple, one of my favorite fair treats.

I loved seeing the displays of quilts, woodworking, and handicrafts.  
We saw so many amazing quilts, but the first one is my favorite.
(I think of it as having gold-brown fractal patterns - 
I'm sure it has a real name, but I don't know what it is.)
The tiger and birds-eye maple rocking chair in the second photo, and the 
inlaid/joined table in the last photo, were amazing, too.

We loved these stilt walker-puppeteers.  They were wonderful to watch.
They wandered around the Fair, teasing people, 
then they marched in the parade.  They had a third member of their
group walking around on foot, using a large folding fan as a prop.
He'd sneak up on people and snap the fan open with a loud POP,
and watch them jump.

Harvesting angora rabbit fur - a very fussy task.  
The rabbit was so patient, like a lady enjoying a day at a salon.  
The unshorn rabbits looked like tumbleweeds with ears sticking out.
There was a demonstration of how the fiber is spun into yarn, too.

Guinea pigs!  That was fun to see.  
There must have been a couple hundred of them
lined up against the wall in their cages.
We tried a couple times to catch the draft horse show, 
to take pictures for PYY, but they didn't have 
posted times for individual classes, 
just the note in the brochure that they'd be showing from 8AM-5PM.
So, no horses.  Sorry, PYY!  I took a picture of the pony ride for her, 
and she was happy with that.

Poultry of every shape and size filled most of one building - 
reminding me of my friends who raise chickens for eggs and 4H shows.
They were having a rooster crowing contest (i.e. given a group of
roosters, who could persuade them to crow the most).

Crazy people riding the human slingshot ride.  
It's bad enough to watch this contraption in action
as a permanent installation bolted down at places like Darien Lake, 
but to see it as a mobile unit with a traveling fair was scary.  
This one wasn't even enclosed in a cage - it was just seats and harnesses
fastened into a weighted tubular metal frame, 
and hooked on each side to the mega-bungee-spring-cords.
You'd have to update my will and buy my tombstone before putting me on it, 
because I'd be dead of fright before the ride stopped its first bounce.

And of course, the concert - a back-to-the-80s triple billing of 
Night Ranger, Foreigner, and Journey.
The photos are of Journey; we were way up in the grandstand.  
The concerts were great, except for the lighting 
(which gave me a nasty headache - I apparently have 
NO tolerance for bright lights flashing in my face any more). 
Watching the crowd was almost as entertaining as the bands themselves. 
We had a great time, and I wouldn't trade the romantic moment 
of snuggling with my husband during 'Faithfully' for anything.

We finally dragged ourselves home a bit after 1AM.
Then we immediately took showers - we were dusty, sweaty, sticky ,
and we smelled of smoke (tobacco and pot, courtesy of a few people 
who felt that the grandstand NO SMOKING rule didn't apply to them).
Then we collapsed into bed.  
What a great day!


  1. Thanks for sharing, Laurel! It does look like a fabulous day, and I think it's positively inspired to NOT take children to the Fair!

  2. I want to do it again next year!